Dealer Severely Overtightened Lugnuts!

Messages
14,732
Location
Central NY
Swapped over to the winter tires/wheels on my parents' 2018 Escape. Studded Hakkapeliitas!

They get the car serviced and repaired at the dealer. This includes brake jobs and inspections; both of which have been done over the summer.

Was expecting it to be quick and easy. Usually can get them off with the 4 way. Nope, couldn't even touch the lugnuts with the 4 way. So I grabbed my 1/2'' craftsman 12'' ratchet. Nope. Pulled out my torque wrench and kept creeping up to see how tight this lugnut was. 150 - nope. 175 - nope. 200 - nope. I made it all the way to 250, the max, and still was clicking before it was attempting to break them free.

Ended up using a 3' pipe on the end of my ratchet to get it off.

Attempted to break the rest of them free. Twelve lug nuts were at or above 250 ft/lb , 7 were at 150 and one was loose. Ended up rounding one lug nut off. Thankfully I had another set I was going to put on anyway.

Called the dealer to complain and they don't know anything about it. My parents paid for brake jobs there but the dealer knows nothing about it. When I asked them about taking tires off for inspection "Well, um, I don't know about that".

My parents have been loyal to this dealer for 35 years. I'm not sure I understand it, but my father is a Ford guy. He doesn't like the 1.6L engine in their current escape, nor does he like the AWD system in it (functions fine, but he's afraid of the PDU). Neither of them like how you can't see out of the Escape. I've been pushing them to get a Forester from the dealer that's only 10 miles away instead of a Ford from the dealer that is 35 miles away.

Frustrating! Thankfully I didn't snap any studs along the way and I was able to get out the rounded lugnut!
 
Messages
10,743
Location
MA
From what I have gathered, never use a torque wrench to remove lug nuts.
It is hard on the torque wrench.
Use a breaker bar, with a pipe extension if needed.
Here's a Ryobi one that's good for 300 foot pounds for $100 with battery and charger.


The Milwaukee 2767 at 1400 foot pounds will remove any lug nut but somewhat overkill. Not a good deal on it so far, but when it's on sale, it's about $250 for the impact wrench and battery.

 
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Messages
1,818
Location
SW Ontario Canada
All too often the reputation of a company falls to the lowest paid employees. I worked in Automotive metal stamping for 24 years, the people sorting for defects are the lowest paid, often temp workers. The cost of shipping any defects can be HUGE, and it usually affects the company's ability to bid on new projects if the "incidents" are more than 1x per year. Recalls are another matter, talk about causing huge $$ penalties.

So what's the solution? train these workers better, then you have to pay them more or they walk down the road to your competitor. OEM's automate processes to improve repeatability and reduce overall costs, not a good omen for future humans.
 
Messages
5,104
Location
Pittsburgh,PA U.S.A.
I bought a 1/2 inch drive torque wrench specifically for the lug-nuts on my new to me 2016 Honda CR-V. The dealer put new brakes and new tires on it just before I bought it in February. I have a 4 way that I cut off the largest socket and made that side it into a big screw-driver end for removing hub-caps on our 2001 Impala, but it still has the 3/4 socket which is only 0.002 inches larger than 19 mm that my Honda requires. My 4 way is one of the shorter ones, but with this 4 way a couple of the lug nuts required the maximum effort I could provide to get them off. Everyone of them was more than 80 Lb/ft but I did not measure how much it took to get them off. Now with them set to the proper torque of 80 Lb/ft they are easy to remove with the short 4 way. Now even the cheap L wrench that came with the vehicle and is also used with the jack, could probably remove them, but I will not subject the studs to the angular forces it causes.

Most places use air tools to remove and also to install the lug-nuts. A few use the special torque extensions with the air guns to tighten the lug-nuts, but not many places use them. The local Walmart in West-Mifflin by Century III is one place that uses torque wrenches. They even drive the vehicle a very short distance and then re-torque.

I have heard that over-tightening and or un-even tightening of lug nuts can warp rotors, which is another good reason to always use a torque wrench when tightening.

I know that there is a way to turn around the drive stud on my 1/2 inch torque wrench to measure torque in the other direction, but I have never used it. I would never use a torque wrench to loosen lug-nuts because there is a chance that you would exceed what the wrench can handle and cause it to loose calibration.

BTW, I have read that some pressure gauges that use a boron tube may loose calibration if you actually subject it to the maximum pressure the dial can read. So for some mechanical measuring systems staying below the maximum is a good idea to insure it stays within calibration. Therefore I do not want to ever take my torque wrench beyond 80 % of max reading.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Miller88, I do not know if it is still true for the 2020 and 2021 models, but there were post about older models of Subaru having problems with the AC system. What those post said was that in general many of them do not have any problems, but for the ones that do the fix is expensive, and almost always does not last long, and repeats every couple of years and is expensive every time. Apparently there is something about the AC system in them that when it causes problems they can not really get it fixed to be without problems for a long time. There are post here on BITOG about people getting the AC fixed many times and each time it is very expensive, and there are post about people selling them because they got tired of paying to get the AC fixed. So it may NOT be a good idea to steer your parents towards Subaru.

BTW, the posts about Subaru AC systems is why I ruled them out of the vehicles to consider when I was looking for my next vehicle at the end of last year and the beginning of this year.
 
Messages
2,902
Location
Northeast
Took a quick look into the shop area to see how far along the work was and appeared that the tech was using a breaker bar about 4 feet long to tighten the lugs of the car that was having new studded snow tires installed . They were purchased there . Many other snow / all season tires were purchsed from them over the years . Seems fine , had them swapped out at a different shop for A/S in mid spring . Customer loyalty means nothing .
 
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Messages
35,689
Location
NY
No surprise there. They slam them home with an impact gun cranked all the way up letting it hammer away on them, then repeat they the process on each lug nut about 5 times.
 

gathermewool

Site Donor
Messages
8,927
Location
New England
When I inquired about a quote and some questions pertaining to a job at my local dealer they pointed me to a specific service tech. He then proceeded to admit that they don't use torque wrenches. He went on to say that the FSM doesn't even list torque specs. I normally keep my mouth shut, but I had to correct him harshly! "Are you kidding me? Of course it does and of course you should be using a torque wrench if you can fit on in the space!"

He gave me the, "yea, OK..." look; the two younger-looking guys on either side of him just stood there silently.

//

I had a similar issue to you, but didn't have a cheater bar o me at the time. I bounced on the lug wrench that came with the car as much as I thought was safe and nothing! I ended up taking it back to the tire shop and laying into the service guy who previously assured me they used torque sticks. I didn't lay into him for nothing. I literally saw cars with wheels being installed with air guns as I walked in. I must have looked crazy to the people in the waiting room.
 

Miller88

Thread starter
Messages
14,732
Location
Central NY
I do have an impact, but didn't think I would need it.


I understood the OP fully. But ... don't use a torque wrench to remove lug nuts.
I removed them with the 3' pipe on the ratchet. I was only using the torque wrench to get an idea of how tight they were.
 
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Miller88

Thread starter
Messages
14,732
Location
Central NY
I bought a 1/2 inch drive torque wrench specifically for the lug-nuts on my new to me 2016 Honda CR-V. The dealer put new brakes and new tires on it just before I bought it in February. I have a 4 way that I cut off the largest socket and made that side it into a big screw-driver end for removing hub-caps on our 2001 Impala, but it still has the 3/4 socket which is only 0.002 inches larger than 19 mm that my Honda requires. My 4 way is one of the shorter ones, but with this 4 way a couple of the lug nuts required the maximum effort I could provide to get them off. Everyone of them was more than 80 Lb/ft but I did not measure how much it took to get them off. Now with them set to the proper torque of 80 Lb/ft they are easy to remove with the short 4 way. Now even the cheap L wrench that came with the vehicle and is also used with the jack, could probably remove them, but I will not subject the studs to the angular forces it causes.

Most places use air tools to remove and also to install the lug-nuts. A few use the special torque extensions with the air guns to tighten the lug-nuts, but not many places use them. The local Walmart in West-Mifflin by Century III is one place that uses torque wrenches. They even drive the vehicle a very short distance and then re-torque.

I have heard that over-tightening and or un-even tightening of lug nuts can warp rotors, which is another good reason to always use a torque wrench when tightening.

I know that there is a way to turn around the drive stud on my 1/2 inch torque wrench to measure torque in the other direction, but I have never used it. I would never use a torque wrench to loosen lug-nuts because there is a chance that you would exceed what the wrench can handle and cause it to loose calibration.

BTW, I have read that some pressure gauges that use a boron tube may loose calibration if you actually subject it to the maximum pressure the dial can read. So for some mechanical measuring systems staying below the maximum is a good idea to insure it stays within calibration. Therefore I do not want to ever take my torque wrench beyond 80 % of max reading.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Miller88, I do not know if it is still true for the 2020 and 2021 models, but there were post about older models of Subaru having problems with the AC system. What those post said was that in general many of them do not have any problems, but for the ones that do the fix is expensive, and almost always does not last long, and repeats every couple of years and is expensive every time. Apparently there is something about the AC system in them that when it causes problems they can not really get it fixed to be without problems for a long time. There are post here on BITOG about people getting the AC fixed many times and each time it is very expensive, and there are post about people selling them because they got tired of paying to get the AC fixed. So it may NOT be a good idea to steer your parents towards Subaru.

BTW, the posts about Subaru AC systems is why I ruled them out of the vehicles to consider when I was looking for my next vehicle at the end of last year and the beginning of this year.

The Subaru AC system thing only affects the 14-18 Foresters. Unfortunately, I know that because I have a 2018 Forester that has been back to the dealer six times and still doesn't have functional AC. The Impreza and Crosstrek stablemates, and the 19+ Foresters do not have this problem. Luckily.

I'm very frustrated that my issues were not resolved, but I still think that Subaru has a lot more to offer in this segment than any transverse AWDcrossover.
 
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Messages
935
Location
United States
We were all using the expensiver red harbor freight corded impact gun at the truck shop. When there was a time crunch it could remove anything and tighten to “who cares it’s tight” lb/ft
 
Messages
7,104
Location
Roanoke Virginia
This is why I do my own work and am a mechanic. Most likely they tightened it down with an impact. All the time when I worked at the dealership the younger guys would tighten down with an impact and no torque stick or wrench.
 
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